E-Prescribing for Controlled Substances: Will It Work?

Aaron Gilson, PhD, MSSW


March 14, 2011

In This Article

E-Prescribing: Introduction

On June 1, 2010, the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) revised the Code of Federal Regulations to permit prescribers to write prescriptions for schedule II-V controlled substances electronically. These regulatory changes also affect institutional practitioners and pharmacists, but this discussion will be limited to the legal requirements that pertain to individual prescribers.[1] Only practitioners authorized to prescribe controlled substances can be granted authority to issue e-prescriptions, and it has to be ensured that unauthorized individuals do not gain access to the electronic system for generating or altering prescriptions for illicit purposes. Given this context, these new regulations were designed principally to:

Ensure an adequate supply of controlled substances for legitimate medical, scientific, research, and industrial purposes, and to deter the diversion of controlled substances for illegal purposes.[1]


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